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VW I.D. Roomzz concept previews an electric, 3-row SUV for 2021

Volkswagen's EV concept brings 280 miles of all-electric range and "completely new seating configurations" to the 2019 Shanghai Motor Show.

VW I.D. Roomzz

Never mind the far-out name; Volkswagen's new I.D. Roomzz concept is very much based in reality. Making its debut at the Shanghai Motor Show this week, the Roomzz is the latest concept in Volkswagen's I.D. series, and this one takes the shape of an electric, three-row SUV -- something the German automaker says will be released globally in 2021.

"The I.D. Roomzz shows us what we can expect from full-size, electric SUVs in the future," Klaus Bischoff, Volkswagen's head designer, said in a statement. The concept is said to have Level 4 autonomous capabilities, meaning it can drive itself in certain areas and under certain conditions. That means the steering wheel can be stowed away when not in use, allowing for "completely new configuration options for the integrated seats," according to VW's statement.

In the standard, human-driven mode (Volkswagen calls this "I.D. Drive"), the seats are configured in a traditional arrangement. When the fully autonomous "I.D. Pilot" mode is activated, the seats can be rotated inward 25 degrees to "enable a more communicative, lounge-like atmosphere on board," according to VW. From there, "I.D. Pilot Relax" mode allows each passenger to move and recline their own individual seats.

Up front, the digital dashboard is housed on a glass panel that looks like it hovers in front of the driver. The steering wheel also has digital controls, as well as a 5.8-inch display. An augmented reality navigation system projects relevant information onto the windscreen, like an arrow showing the driver exactly where they need to turn.

Volkswagen says the production version of the I.D. Roomzz will have "up to seven seats." Those cool doors, however, which aren't hinged to the pillars but rather controlled via levers underneath the floor, probably won't see production.

While the production I.D. Roomzz will have up to seven seats, the concept shows off a potential lounge-like, reclining seat option.


The powertrain, on the other hand, isn't too far fetched. Volkswagen says the I.D. Roomzz uses two electric motors that can continuously drive both axles, for through-the-road all-wheel drive. Total system output is rated at 302 horsepower, and VW estimates this could allow the concept to accelerate to 62 miles per hour in 6.6 seconds, with a limited top speed of 112 mph. (Where have we heard that one before?)

As for electric driving range, Volkswagen says the 82-kilowatt-hour should be good for about 280 miles on the European WLTP test cycle. US-specific EPA data isn't available, but our numbers are always a bit lower than the European figures.

Following the I.D. Roomzz concept's introduction at the 2019 Shanghai Motor Show, Volkswagen says the production version should bow sometime in 2020, ahead of its 2021 market launch. The I.D. Roomzz will follow the I.D. hatchback (which isn't coming to the US), as well as the smaller I.D. Crozz SUV (which we will be getting). Here's hoping they change the name.

Not exactly a bad-looking thing, right?